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Contextualizing World Literature


Edited By Jean Bessière and Gerald Gillespie

This book revisits the notion of World Literature and its applications in Comparative Literature. It suggests the notion not as a means to sift out international paradigms for reading literatures, but as a set of guidelines for the construction of interlocking and/or reciprocally illuminating multilingual literary clusters. These ensembles are of very diverse shapes: the world, a region, a country, a language block, a network of cross-cultural «interferences» – while the so-called minor literatures invite to question the use of these ensembles. Within this frame, fourteen essays respond to the basic paradox of World Literature: how may specific methodological and critical outlooks allow expression of the universal? The answers to this question can be arranged in three groups: 1. Recognition of the need to break loose from European or Western critical perspectives; 2. Presentation of macro- and microcosmic dimensions connectedness and its processes; 3. Definitions of the methodological efforts and hermeneutic orientations to be applied.
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Series index


New Comparative Poetics

This series publishes contributions which explore new territory in the ever-evolving field of comparative literature. Its monographs, written in English or in French, typically deal with the interaction between various authors, literary genres and societies or cultures, if necessary drawing on literary theory.

The term “comparative” is not restricted to the study of different national literatures. It also refers to comparative studies within a single linguistic culture, e.g. in a multicultural society or a postcolonial country. The series seeks to re-assess the complex relationship between margin and center, emphasizing, whenever possible, a non-Eurocentric perspective.

Series Editor : Marc MAUFORT

Université libre de Bruxelles (Belgique)

Series Titles

N° 33 – Jaime BARON, Le sujet poétique chez Apollinaire et Huidobro, 2015.

No. 32 – Laurence TALAIRACH-VIELMAS & Marie BOUCHET (eds.), Insects in Literature and the Arts, 2014.

No. 31 – Jean PERROT, Henry James’s Enigmas. Turning the Screw of Eternity?, 2104.

No. 30 – Haun SAUSSY & Gerald GILLESPIE (eds.), Intersections, Interferences, Interdisciplines. Literature with Other Arts, 2014.

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